It’s cold & snowy here this morning, so I decided to spice up my morning chocolate shake. I may just get spicy every morning from now on!!
How do you dress up your shakes?
My poor husband is home sick with the flu. He is not one to get sick, so it took a nasty fever to keep him down. I feel bad for him. You can just tell he is miserable, but on the bright side, we are all off from school today, so I decided I would fix it the best way I know how, with food of course!
Now, I love gingerbread! For me, this is not just a Christmas treat; I whip up a gingerbread throughout the year. It is spicy (like me), full of flavor, and it tastes like a big warm hug. ***sigh***
So, I have spent the past two years perfecting my own personal gingerbread recipe, and I’ve finally got that sucker polished to perfection, but today I had bananas. Usually, I toss my ripe bananas in the freezer, to be used at a later date, but I just cleaned out my freezer and realized that I had a ridiculous stockpile of frozen bananas, so now I’m on a mission to use them right away.
This is how I got the great idea to add the gingerbread spice blend to my banana bread recipe, and the result was AWESOME! It even prompted the sick one to sit up from the couch and ask me what smelled so good. I consider this a win!
I sincerely hope you all stay healthy this winter, but just in case you need a pick me up, may I suggest this yummy treat.
This recipe is an old favorite with a new twist. I have made this simple pumpkin dip for many fall occasions, but this is the first year I have topped it with the chai whipped cream. This marriage of flavors makes a simple recipe into something sophisticated that is sure to catch the attention of your fellow party goers.
Extra Creamy Pumpkin Dip with Chai Whipped Cream
I recommend making the whipped cream first. While you can used a pre-made whipped topping, it’s really not the same as homemade.
Chai Whipped Cream
1 pint of heavy whipping cream
2/3 cup of confectioner’s sugar
3 tbsp. of powdered chai drink mix ( I prefer Tastefully Simple)
1. Place an empty metal mixing bowl in the freezer for about 5 minutes.
2. Remove the chilled bowl and add the cream.
3. Using an electric mixer, whisk on high-speed until it starts to stiffen.
4. Add sugar & chai slowly until fully blended.
5. Set aside in a clean bowl.
6. ** Be sure not to over-whip it so that it is stiff and firm. It should be soft & fluffy.
Extra Creamy Pumpkin Dip
2 blocks of cream cheese, softened
1 can (14.5 oz) of pumpkin puree
2 cups of confectioner’s sugar
2 tsp of ground cinnamon
1 tsp of ground ginger
1. Place the softened cream cheese into the same bowl that you just used to make the whipped cream. (I don’t even wash it.)
2. Using the whisk, whip the cream cheese on medium until it is fluffy and free from any lumps.
3. Spoon in the pumpkin puree, 1 dollop at a time, until it is completely incorporated.
4. Add the sugar and spices until creamy & smooth. Be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl!
The Final Presentation
Pour the pumpkin dip into a shallow dish. Then gently spread the whipped cream on top. Garnish with a few sprinkles of cinnamon. Keep refrigerated until you are ready to serve it.
I have served this dip with apple or pear slices, ginger snaps, Nilla Wafers, or graham crackers, but be creative and see what else you can pair with this simple favorite.
Note: The chai whipped cream is great on pumpkin bread or gingerbread. It is also heavenly on top of pecan pie 🙂
Just because its fall does not mean that you have to abandon fruity cocktails. This recipe allows you to hang on to a fabulous fancy drink, while embracing the flavors of fall. I made this for a harvest girls’ night out, but it would also work well for a Sunday Funday football gathering. I also plan to add it to my Thanksgiving menu this year. The added bonus is that the potency of the wine is cut by the fruit, soda, juice, so it is a nice cocktail to sip on throughout a party. So sit back, sip away, and enjoy the fruits of your labor!
Fall Apple & Pear Sangria
1 bottle of white wine (I used a sweet white blend)
3 cups of apple cider
1 cup of club soda
1/2 cup of brandy
2 chunks of fresh ginger cut into 1 inch pieces
2 apples (I used Pink Lady)
2 pears (I used Bosh & Anjou)
1. In a saucepan, simmer the apple cider and ginger for about 5-7 minutes. Remove the ginger and set aside to cool.
2. Meanwhile, mix the wine, club soda, & brandy in a large pitcher.
3. Wash the apples and pears, and then slice horizontally through the core, creating thin large circles. Remove any
seeds. Set aside.
4. Add the cooled cider to the pitcher and mix well.
5. Add the sliced fruit and chill in the refrigerator for at least an hour. You can make it up to several hours ahead.
‘Tis the season for salad. As the reality sets in that bathing suit, tank top, and shorts weather has arrived, we are all feeling the need to eat a little healthier and we are a bit more body conscious. But one needs to be cautious when eating salads not to fall into” lettuce limbo”, or “dressing death-traps”. This salad is a simple recipe for a well rounded meal, that won’t trick you into five extra pounds.
Prep time: 8 minutes Serves: 1 Calories: Approx 383